Dmitry Orlov on Hegemon

From Dmitry Orlov:

Iran wouldn’t actually have to do anything kinetic; it would suffice for it to threaten to attack some oil tankers for their insurance coverage to be voided, preventing them from loading cargo or setting sail. That would block deliveries of close to two-thirds of all the crude oil that’s shipped by sea…

In order to be effective in action, a US aircraft carrier has to be within 500 km of the targets its aircraft are going to bomb. That’s the typical round-trip range of the aircraft without mid-air refueling. But if said aircraft carrier approaches any closer than 1000 km of said potential adversary, it can be sunk using an entire array of modern weapons against which it has no defenses…

The way things have been going, in just a few years the entire federal budget is going to be swallowed up by interest payments on the federal debt…

Other than saving face and making the retreat look anything other than a shameful rout, there are some practical considerations to pulling out all of the equipment. There is too much of it to pull out by air. It got there via Russia, but begging Russia for help again would be too humiliating. It could perhaps be retrieved via Pakistan, but US-Pakistani relations are in terrible shape. But leaving all of the equipment in place would produce a rather shockingly well-equipped Taliban, causing an international scandal. Last, best choice is to destroy all of the equipment in place, but this would produce terrible optics both at home and abroad…

US farmers are driven into bankruptcy because their GMO-contaminated soya is being replaced by ecologically clean Russian soya (GMOs are illegal in Russia) with major health benefits for the Chinese…

The sanctions against Huawei, which makes half the smartphones and much else, have cut off the US from the next major advance in network technology. And since Google’s recent decision not to support future versions of Huawei phones or to provide updates to current ones, smartphones will no longer run Android, cutting the US out of most of the smartphone market…

China will continue to sell from its hoard of over $1 trillion in US federal debt, driving up the interest rate the US has to pay in order to continue to borrow more and more all the time (which it has to in order to avoid defaulting on its existing debt).

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